2021 – Working Hard(ly)

                       (ignore April 30, 2017 publish date – this was published on August 14, 2021)


One good thing about taking pictures for most of your life is that you’re always uncovering folders from decades ago that you’ve forgotten about and that have some cool shots in them (slightly-biased opinion).

I just found some me-related images that cover a 15-year period (1976 to 1991). Most are work-related (though sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference…………it WAS a fun job, you know), but the first two are at-home fun pix.


1976 – Two fuzzy cats living in a house in River Edge, NJ with a lead guitarist in one band (and his wife), a lead singer in another band, and that singer’s other 346 cats. The flash did evil things to Spike’s eyes:


1979 – Speaking of eyes, I was at home in my Ridgefield Park, NJ, apartment, recovering from an eye operation, when my very health-conscious girlfriend decided to go against everything she believed in and made me an eye-poppingly-unhealthy treat and took a great picture of the treat and the treated:



1980 – That same girlfriend met Todd Rundgren and his lady backstage at the Capitol Theatre in Passaic, NJ, dressed as a Rely tampon (WHAT?).

If you’d like to know the insanely-wild story about this and how she wound up on two stages in two different states that night (in front of wildly-cheering audiences), you’ll have to go to https://bobleafe.com/ and enter “RELY” in the search box AND check the “Search Descriptions Also” box.

And I took all the pictures, so I was working.



1984? – In 1982, I was named the official photographer of the Uncle Floyd Show. If you’re not familiar with John Lennon’s and David Bowie’s favorite US comedy show, go to my site and look under “Uncle Floyd”.

Besides taking all the pictures of the studio tapings, live shows in four states and the Uncle Floyd Show Album, I also:

– posed on the studio set (someone’s standing next to me)


– wrangled props in front of the Broad St, Newark, NJ studio


– AND appeared in bits (this one was a takeoff on the old “College Bowl” TV show, but instead of smart college students, we were supposed to be dopey high school students (I know…………I look pretty convincing):


On September 14, 1984, I shot the first MTV Viewer Music Awards. All that stuff’s on my site, but when I finally got home, I still had to load my B&W film into film developing tanks while it was still dark out. The roll that was still in my camera had two shots left, so here are shots #35 and 36:



1985 – I took this shot at the very first Farm Aid Benefit concert at Memorial Stadium on the campus of the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana on Sunday, September 22, 1985.

In the story on my site, I mention how it was probably the most difficult show I ever shot. From my site:

I wasn’t in the pit for this show. A couple of us decided to be in the audience against the barrier in front because we had been told we’d be rotated in the pit and we didn’t come all that distance to miss any bands. This decision meant that we’d be giving up backstage and STAGE access and all the amenities, like food and shelter.

Unfortunately, it also meant STANDING in one spot from 8am until 1am the next morning (17 hours!) with little food and no bathroom through a morning downpour wearing plastic garbage bags over our heads and cameras. It was extremely hot and humid inside them and you couldn’t see through the constantly-fogged eyepiece, which you would try to dry off with a sweat-soaked shirt.

Thoroughly exhausted after the show, we then had to walk at least a mile with 50-pound packs, hop in a car and drive 150 miles north to Chicago for an early-morning flight home.


This photo I found shows that ONE SPOT against the barrier that we could not move from. It also shows exhausted colleagues Chuck Pulin and DebraTrebitz:


Three months later (12-16-85), things had returned to “normal”. I shot KISS at Madison Square Garden and the after-show party was at the Playboy Empire Club.

In this photo by colleague Larry Busacca, bunny Lorraine Mascara and I switch jobs as she takes pictures of me before I drop the tray:




Another Larry Busacca image from sometime in 1986 finds me in a fog at some show, probably at Madison Square Garden, where I managed a smile before passing out (just kidding):


Probably the biggest show I shot in 1986 was the Amnesty International “Conspiracy of Hope” concert at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ, which you can read about and view on my site.

After I got home from this all-day event, I took a selfie. Now I had never, ever worn a photographer’s vest before (or after), but I thought it might be a good idea for this show (don’t ask me why).

I also had never worn a headband before (or after), but people found it interesting because of the brand………….something about “Fruit”?



On October 10, 1986, I shot The British Invasion Tour 1986 at the Felt Forum (Madison Square Garden’s “theater”). There’s a shot on my site where I managed to get all 20 or so of the band members together on some stairs and this is what I wrote under it:

Various members of Freddie and the Dreamers, The Mindbenders, Chad and Jeremy, The Searchers, Gerry and The Pacemakers.

Personally, this was very special to be able to gather all these ’60s musical heroes to pose for me. Later, at the after-show party at The Saint – appropriately on the site of the old Fillmore East – I had a drink with Freddie (bottom left with the toothpaste grin) and chatted with him for a while.

It was quite strange to be talking to the guy I remembered seeing on TV in the ’60s, flapping arms and legs to ‘I’m Telling You Now’, while we at home followed along, singing ‘I’m Milking A Cow’.


And here’s the shot of Freddie Garrity and me:





Here’s a shot of me taken backstage somewhere after some show by somebody:





Part of my job is to watch out for my fellow photographers (concert work can be dangerous). I took this shot of Ron Akiyama and Lisa Lake (who doesn’t appear to be overly concerned) on 7-7-89 at the Ulster Performing Arts Center in Kingston, NY:



Me, Jimi and Johnny…………not sure where this was – possibly The Ritz? – or what year it was taken (pretty sure it was in the 80s) or how many sheets to the wind I was:


Perfect ending for the 80s, no?





I was on the road in Florida with Danger Danger for a few shows. This event was connected to their show in Tampa. They did an in-store in St. Pete (I think) and I took this rather confusing shot outside the store:

The girls (and the big balloon) were connected to a radio station in Tampa. The ridiculous-looking “Dr. Paul Bearer” (how original) was with a St. Pete station (according to his hearse’s door).

Competing stations getting along? Ridiculous!


After shooting KISS again at Madison Square Garden on 11-9-90, the after-show get-together was a little more sedate this time at Charlie O’s – an MSG bar. I’m with my former agent, the late Virginia Lohle:

Geez – the photographer could have waited until we finished chewing!





This was taken at the Great Falls in Paterson, NJ, by Tamara Singer:

If you look closely, you can see her pink top reflected in my shades.


If you think I’m making this up, I happened to take one of her as well at the same place:

And here’s what I wrote about her on my site:

Great Falls Chasm Bridge, Paterson, NJ 1991

I met Tamara when we were both shooting the Clash of the Titans tour (Anthrax, Slayer, Megadeth, Alice in Chains) at the Orange County (NY) Speedway. She was cute, fun to be with, and has the distinction of being the only Jewish girl to fill me with Christmas spirit.


I think that’s a nice note to end this on.







  1. ANNE RASO August 14, 2021

    You definitely had a future at the Playboy Empire Club. Do not know why you gave up that cocktail hostess gig so easily!

  2. Laura Kaye August 14, 2021

    Great post, stories, and photos!!

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